Thursday, August 18, 2011

Mini Reviews #1

This is the first time I've done a collection of short reviews (I've seen lots of folks do these and call them all kinds of cute things, so just be aware that I am not the originator of the idea, but I'm not sure who exactly inspired it).  It really is a hodge podge of books that I've just not got a lot to say about.  I've also taken Kristen's suggestion to write a five-word description instead of a summary.  But I bent it to a sentence, cause I'm not that amazing.  Hard, but rather freeing.  

Bink and Gollie (Junior Library Guild Selection (Candlewick Press))

Bink and Gollie by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee
Source: Library

Two best friends embark on adventures armed with imagination and roller skates.

My thoughts: Cute, love the illustrations, and it totally reminded me of myself and my best friend in grade school - she was more than a foot taller than me too.  Lots of fun for those just learning to read chapter books.

The Tale of Despereaux Being the Story of a Mouse a Princess Some Soup and a Spool of Thread - 2006 publication.
The Tale of Despereaux by kate DiCamillo
Source: Audio from library

Unusually courageous mouse rescues soup-deprived princess.

My thoughts: This story never fails to entertain me.  My husband and I listened to it on a road trip and he loved it too (surprisingly).  It has quirky characters, a fun and unusual story, and lots of heart and soul.  Worth the read or the listen, especially for kids.

City of Fallen Angels (Mortal Instruments, Book 4)
City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare
Source: Library

The aftermath of war can be just as treacherous with rocky relationships and unexpected enemies.

My thoughts: I'm not going to lie, I enjoyed the Mortal Instruments book, despite all of its flaws, but this just seemed superfluous.  I got tired of the stretching out of Jace and Clary's up and down relationship and the plot was just unbelievably all over the place.  The series was better without it.

The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
Source: Audio from library

Seventh son of a seventh son seeks the signs that will aid in an ancient battle of good and evil.

My thoughts: This is an all-time fantasy favorite.  The story never fails to entertain me and listening to it on audio was just as good (again, my husband was really interested in it and he is hard to please).  I just love how complex the story is and how amazingly the fantasy details are woven with real life.  A classic tale.

Cahoots (The Aldo Zelnick Comic Novel Series)
Cahoots by Karla Oceanak
Source: Review copy from publisher

Aldo attempts to survive his summer on a farm without electronic devices.

My thoughts: It's a fun romp filled with humor and kid-friendly drawings.  It will appeal to fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Dork Diaries, though Aldo is no Greg Huffley.  Still, his summer adventures will delight and hopefully educate tweens who can't seem to get enough drawing-filled diary books.

Any thoughts on these?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage


  1. The only one of these I've read is The Tale of Despereaux - which I adored! I have had The Dark Is Rising on my to-read list for quite a while.

    I've resorted to the short review approach a couple of times in the recent past because I'm so very far behind on my reviews. I do find it "freeing"! :)

  2. I personally like short reviews better. I don't really read long reviews. My favorite thing about your reviews is your read-a-likes. They tell me so much about a book without giving anything away.

  3. I absolutely adore The Dark is Rising series of books. I've been reading them again and again since I read them first as a child. Those books and the Taran Wanderer series by Lloyd Alexander led me to the classic Welsh myth cycle, The Maginogian, and lots of other things I never would've known about. Love them. Glad you do, too!

  4. Alison, I really like it too! And hope you get to the Dark is Rising soon.

    Jessica, I tend to like short ones too, though I write longer ones usually :)

    Caitlin, ooh I haven't heard of The Maginogian, but if it's like Lloyd Alexander's stuff, I'll have to check it out!

  5. Ack! I LOVE TMI series. Am I going to be disappointed by CITY OF FALLEN ANGELS? It's been sitting on my shelf for awhile. I need to read it, but now I'm scared ...

  6. Susan, me too! Maybe I was just not in the mood for it or something. Give it a shot, though.


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